Liberia: Patients Bear the Brunt of Health Workers Nationwide Strike


Gbarnga, Bong County – Aletha Binda had the look of abject despair despite giving birth to a set of triplets when she was evacuated from the Phebe Hospital by mother and aunt.

 With deep maternal concerns, Aletha, her mom and aunt held the children separately in their hands, as they left the premises of the hospital in search of a private clinic.

Trying to hold back her tears but with little success, Aletha said she gave birth Sunday, September 22, 2019 at 1:00 am.

There was a somber atmosphere in the delivery section of the hospital Monday morning. Without much light in the ward and virtual darkness in the entire hospital due to fuel shortage, the gloom was palpable.
The silence was occasionally broken by the cries of some patients – mainly children – some no doubt in pain. The sight of parents and relatives desperately trying to give all the love and care to their loved ones knowing fully well that without adequate medical attention says it all.

At the C.B Dunbar Maternity Hospital in Gbarnga, a mother of a two-month-old child who was admitted to the hospital begged doctors to treat her son.
A distraught Lucy McGill would only hope that doctors at least prescribe some medications for her son. Ms McGill said her son, who suffers from malaria, needs urgent medical attention.

Ms McGill was among many patients in Bong County who are feeling the traumatic effects of health workers’ strike that started Monday, September 23, 2019, and which, FrontPageAfrica’s tour of hospitals in Bong County, has been particularly hard on children and pregnant women.

Most patients who were turned away by public hospitals in Gbarnga, urged government to heed to the health workers’ pleas.

Ms Josephine Cooper, who took her father for treatment at Phebe Hospital, was turned away by the hospital’s security guards.

Dr. Jefferson Saybay, chief medical officer of Phebe Hospital, the administration decided to send home patients after health workers downed their tools.